Article 370 that grants special status to Jammu and Kashmir will be removed, Union Home Minister Amit Shahsaid in Rajya Sabha today. The Opposition-led by the Congress said that the timing of the such a resolution was not right. “Entire valley is under curfew, political leaders including three former chief ministers are under house arrest. There is a war like situation in the state, so this should be discussed on priority,” Ghulam Nabi Azad said in the Rajya Sabha. To this Shah replied, “I am ready for all discussions by the leader of the Opposition, the entire opposition and the members of the ruling party over Kashmir issue. I am ready to answer all questions.”
What was Article 370?
Article 35A confers special rights and privileges upon the citizens of J&K and prohibits people from outside the state from buying/purchasing any immovable property in the state. The article authorizes the state's legislature to define "permanent residents" of J&K and provide them with notable benefits exclusive only to them. It was incorporated in the Constitution by a 1954 Presidential order.
The original draft explained "the Government of the State means the person for the time being recognised by the President as the Maharaja of Jammu and Kashmir acting on the advice of the Council of Ministers for the time being in office under the Maharaja's Proclamation dated the fifth day of March, 1948."
The article says that the provisions of Article 238, which was omitted from the Constitution in 1956 when Indian states were reorganised, shall not apply to the state of Jammu and Kashmir.